Swamp Fox

Commander

Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
1,362
Jacksonville, FL
#1
Mel Gibson's character in The Patriot, Benjamin Martin, was apparently based off of a real person...Lieutenant Colonel Francis Marion, the “Swamp Fox”

What can you tell me about Swamp Fox? Did he really have run ins with Cornwallis ?
 

Belisarius

Forum Staff
Jun 2006
10,359
U.K.
#2
Commander said:
Mel Gibson's character in The Patriot, Benjamin Martin, was apparently based off of a real person...Lieutenant Colonel Francis Marion, the “Swamp Fox”

What can you tell me about Swamp Fox? Did he really have run ins with Cornwallis ?
I thought he spent most of his time running away from Tarlton's Legion. :)
 
Jun 2006
368
Earthquake Central
#3
I don't think he had direct conflicts with the British Army. His tactics were more hit and run, ambushes, freeing of prisoners and stealing of supplies. He is basicly the father of American Guerilla warfare.

The Patriot, although a fun movie, is not an accurate depiction of Francis Marion.
 

CelticBard

Historum Emeritas
Aug 2006
758
Roving
#4
Once again don't trust Mel with your history.

Francis Marion was a general when he was serving with the South Carolina militia. He was a good guerrilla leader, but was mostly indecisive. He also wasn't a big fan of Indians.

And yes, he did spend much of his time fighting "Bloody Ban" Banastare Tarleton.
 

Commander

Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
1,362
Jacksonville, FL
#5
I wasn't really saying Mel Gibson's story was an accurate depiction of history, in fact I think everyone here knows that he likes to throw in more drama than necessary. With that said ... did "Bloody Ban" Banastare Tarleton really burn does civilian villages and lock people up inside a church and burn it? Or was this all speculation by Gibson to make the British look bad?
 

Lord_Cronus

Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
1,047
Georgia
#6
Commander said:
I wasn't really saying Mel Gibson's story was an accurate depiction of history, in fact I think everyone here knows that he likes to throw in more drama than necessary. With that said ... did "Bloody Ban" Banastare Tarleton really burn does civilian villages and lock people up inside a church and burn it? Or was this all speculation by Gibson to make the British look bad?
Just making an educated guess, and I could be completely wrong, I think Gibson used that scene to make him the ultimate bad guy. Banistre Tarrleton, Tavington in the movie, got the name "Bloody Ban" because of his refusal to give quarter to surrendering troops. It became known as "Tarrleton's Quarter." I don't think he was that merciless that he would kill innocent civilians and burn a place of worship. He would have been drummed out of the army, if not shot for being inhuman.
 

Lord_Cronus

Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
1,047
Georgia
#7
Commander said:
Mel Gibson's character in The Patriot, Benjamin Martin, was apparently based off of a real person...Lieutenant Colonel Francis Marion, the “Swamp Fox”

What can you tell me about Swamp Fox? Did he really have run ins with Cornwallis ?
His character was a mix of two individuals. One was Marion the other was Daniel Morgan. Morgan defeated the British at Cowpens, by setting his army up similar to the way it was set up in the movie.
 
Jun 2006
368
Earthquake Central
#8
I also thought I should point out that Gibson did not make the movie, he just acted in it. If you want to blame someone for the inaccuracies in the movie, Robert Rodat was the writer and Roland Emmerich was the director.
 

Belisarius

Forum Staff
Jun 2006
10,359
U.K.
#10
Lord_Cronus said:
Commander said:
I wasn't really saying Mel Gibson's story was an accurate depiction of history, in fact I think everyone here knows that he likes to throw in more drama than necessary. With that said ... did "Bloody Ban" Banastare Tarleton really burn does civilian villages and lock people up inside a church and burn it? Or was this all speculation by Gibson to make the British look bad?
Just making an educated guess, and I could be completely wrong, I think Gibson used that scene to make him the ultimate bad guy. Banistre Tarrleton, Tavington in the movie, got the name "Bloody Ban" because of his refusal to give quarter to surrendering troops. It became known as "Tarrleton's Quarter." I don't think he was that merciless that he would kill innocent civilians and burn a place of worship. He would have been drummed out of the army, if not shot for being inhuman.
I think Tarlton got his "bad press" in America after the so called "Waxhaw massacre". Tarlton himself always claimed his horse was shot from under him when the Americans tried to surrender and so was unable to restrain his soldiers. I've not come across any evidence of church burnings/massacres of civilians ordered by him, but having said that, it was a viscious war in that area at that time. Still, the Americans got their own back at King's Mountain when they slaughtered surrendering British and Loyalists.
 

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